Oasis Event

Last weekend hosted MGA’s annual company-wide Summer Business Meeting for its internal staff at the Montelucia Resort & Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona. Although many employees arrived earlier in the week for one-on-one training opportunities at MGA’s corporate location in Phoenix, the meeting officially began early Saturday morning.

For seasoned employees of MGA the hospitality and generosity with which MGA treats their employees and clients is nothing new. Twice a year Owner David Zowine flies in his entire internal staff from each of MGA’s 10 outer office locations and houses them in a nearby Phoenix hotel for the weekend. The holidays are a time when Zowine opens up his own family home to his employees while the summer meeting has become synonymous with a company-wide pool party.

This year’s Summer meeting was followed by a complimentary surprise dinner at Mastro’s City Hall Steakhouse Restaurant. Zowine bussed his employees to and from the Montelucia and provided a special select menu as an extra token of gratitude.

Gratitude was one of Zowine’s key points during his company address Saturday morning in which he humbly admitted that MGA is not his company – that it belongs to the people seated in front of him. Throughout his speech he praised many of MGA’s employees directly sharing stories of their personal successes. He tied these personal success stories to the overall success of the company and relayed his plans for future growth and employment opportunity by way of empowerment.

Zowine set the tone for the speakers who followed. The morning was nothing short on inspiration from the unveiling of MGA’s newly redesigned website, to breakout sessions with some of MGA’s managerial staff, to a presentation from motivational guest speaker and 2008 Olympic gold medalist, Henry Cejudo.

The Website – Last Friday MGA launched their brand new home care site and unveiled plans for its upcoming online initiatives. MGA’s Director of Operations Ari Ochoa has been working hard to create a more valuable and accessible online presence for the company, its market, its clients, and employees. The home care site is the first in a series of websites that will follow suit for MGA’s healthcare staffing and technical divisions. All will contain new features such as live updates and social media integration.

Website

Breakout Sessions – The breakout sessions that took place mid-meeting allowed some of the more seasoned veteran employees of MGA to communicate personal anecdotes and experiences of their individual roads to success. Groups of employees rotated to each of the speakers as they pardoned a variety of wisdom and advice. Home Healthcare Manager Brett Costello stressed the importance of communication and not using email as a substitute for getting in front of someone – a key component to MGA’s personal touch and mantra “Above and Beyond”. Charles Johnson, partner to Zowine, expressed his belief in the individual impact each employee can make by believing in their value, taking ownership, and sacrificing. He stated, “I believe in MGA, I believe in you, and I believe that we can revolutionize the industry.” Johnson referenced the recent audit that took place in the Colorado Springs office where MGA was praised as being a model agency due to their family-oriented, patient-centric environment.

Henry Cejudo – Of the many words highlighted at this summer’s meeting – communication, effort, accountability, ethics, empowerment, execution, relationships – perhaps no word was more unanimous amongst the number of speakers as the word sacrifice.

None know sacrifice quite like guest speaker Henry Cejudo. Cejudo, the youngest of six children, was raised solely by his immigrant mother in some of the most poverty-stricken areas of Los Angeles, Las Cruses, and Phoenix. Cejudo’s father was in and out of the California penal system for most of his childhood leaving his mother to work two jobs to care for and support her family. In his speech Cejudo praised his mother’s work ethic and “attitude of no excuse”.

To combat the hardships of his childhood Cejudo immersed himself in school and athletics. When asked how he got into wrestling, Cejudo said, “I’ve been wrestling my whole life.” At the age of 16 he had dominated much of the country. On August 19, 2008 Cejudo became the youngest Olympic champion in the United States.

Cejudo vividly described the moment in which his Olympic dream manifested. He remembers watching American sprinter Michael Johnson shatter the world record in his iconic gold shoes while he sat watching on a milk crate. He then began to picture himself holding up the American flag and achieving the same type of victory – one which he admitted was only accomplished through great sacrifice. – “The sacrifice has to be greater than the dream in order for you to accomplish victory.”

Henry Cejudo

Zowine, like Henry Cejudo, has “an attitude of no excuse”. Although he has struggled throughout the years with ongoing health issues, he has never been short on goals – whether it is something as exact as making it to yoga class 50 days in a row to something as broad as doing the right thing.

As opposed to other companies that focus on monetary successes, Zowine asked something simple of his employees at the close of the meeting – that they create a standard that works for them and live by it. “Do the right thing all of the time. Do the right thing and you’ll minimize your problems and improve the quality of your life.”

As for the future of MGA? Zowine said he believes his employees can grow the company to 500 million if they want to, but he promised that the same family culture will remain.